Girls: The Panic in Central Park
March 27, 2016 11:55 PM - Season 5, Episode 6 - Subscribe

Marnie goes for a walk to blow off steam after a major quarrel with Desi and has a surprise encounter with an old acquaintance.
posted by roolya_boolya (13 comments total)
The characters didn't seem familiar (Desi seems to be too concerned with Marnie, I don't see Chris joining the underworld, Marnie is totally ok with showering in a shared bathroom?) but it was a really enjoyable episode.
posted by armacy at 5:40 AM on March 28, 2016

I loved this episode, but even rewatching, what was Charlie's plan with the dress? Was the plan to stay at the party and then they had to split because of Marnie's prostitution scheme? I guess that's it but it just seemed like a ploy to get Alison Williams in that dress, so she could be extra mermaidy in the water scene. It super worked for me, but I still wondered if there was something I was missing.

The meatballs and dancing at a Little Italy restaurant is so New York in your 20s.
posted by zutalors! at 7:37 AM on March 28, 2016

This was surprisingly good for a Marnie episode.
posted by lmfsilva at 10:58 AM on March 28, 2016 [1 favorite]

There were some great moments in this episode, but I thought the characterization of Marnie was way off. She wouldn't pull the prostitute hustle, she would get mad and offended that the guy thought she was a prostitute and cause a scene. Jessa would be the one to pull the hooker hustle.
posted by vibrotronica at 12:56 PM on March 28, 2016

Yup. Except Jessa would fleece him even harder, and then probably hire the worst prostitute she could find and send her (or him) to their room.
posted by lmfsilva at 1:16 PM on March 28, 2016 [1 favorite]

If Id' known this was going to be a whole episode of Marnie, I might have bailed on it, but it was rather good. We all knew the Desi implosion would happen sooner rather than later, and it would have to be about something as trivial as a scone.

It was interesting to see Marnie out of her comfort zone and having only a minor regression to her self-obsession (when she was talking to the woman in the boutique). And typically for this character, she looked to a man to try to fix her, always unsuccessfully.

It was a sign of how far Charlie had fallen when we saw that squalid room with the trash bag over the window - remembering his immaculate studio with his hand-made cabinets that he lived in during Season 1.
posted by essexjan at 5:04 PM on March 28, 2016 [1 favorite]

I thought this was beautifully done, and really sad.
posted by sallybrown at 6:54 PM on March 28, 2016 [1 favorite]

Was that Kimmie that wakked in on Marnie in the shower? it is!
posted by LizBoBiz at 6:56 PM on March 28, 2016 [1 favorite]

I loved this episode. I really appreciated how self-aware Marnie suddenly was, with her explanation of her marriage to Desi as a result of her not wanting to let her dream die. I desperately want to see where this new, capable and independent Marnie goes next. Also, Charlie absolutely broke my heart. I didn't see the heroin reveal coming, although clearly something was up.
posted by bluloo at 7:17 PM on March 28, 2016 [2 favorites]

I did have a feeling in the preview when they showed her having a reaction seeing someone that it would be Charlie. I don't think she would have that strong of a reaction seeing anyone else.
posted by zutalors! at 7:19 PM on March 28, 2016

This was a fantastic episode, the best of the series, and it was all about Marnie?!? Amazing.

I read this recently: Pretty Girl Privilege [why I like Marnie — or, more precisely, Girls’ horrible treatment of Marnie] It's an old article written during season 3, but it's still relevant to the character. "You’re a pretty, skinny, moderately intelligent girl, and every piece of media you’ve consumed has told you that your life would go one way."

The dots connect for me in terms of the Charlie backstory. Instant riches combined with the loss of a father would be a perfect storm that leads to self-medication. He clearly lost the fancy business because of the drugs (he's way too vague about the details).

There's a good comment on the AV Club review which points out that both Marnie and Ray were always both really harsh about Charlie's perceived lack of masculinity and toughness; that he was too soft. He tried to harden up with his tattoos and his put-on accent and his switchblade, but then the gun came out and he freaked, basically ripping out Marnie's earrings. He's still Charlie.

Except where has Ray been in Charlie's life? Did they lose touch when Charlie got rich and fancy? Did Ray know about the drugs? Maybe it will come up in a future episode.
posted by aabbbiee at 7:15 AM on March 29, 2016 [2 favorites]

I really liked that article, aabbbiee, but then I also love Marnie. I don't know that I agree with the Jennifer Garner/Katherine Heigl bit, but I do agree that Marnie is a type. I think there are better parallels in television:

- Betty Draper is a Marnie.
- Charlotte York Goldenblatt is a Marnie.
- Tina from Togetherness is a Marnie if her life ends up going in that direction.

I think television allows these characters to display both their success-based-on-prettiness and more vulnerable sides.
posted by zutalors! at 7:28 AM on March 29, 2016

At first I thought this was a bottle episode in which we view Marnie running into NuCharlie and he has changed in ways that check things off her list of what was wrong with him, such that I perceived it to essentially be a daydream episode from Marnie's POV.

But the place and the drugs and the denouement with Desi call that into question.

However, who uses glass works these days? Shit's 100% plastic. Well, 99%, the needle's metal (Source: local junkie needletrash in my area parks, my diabetic wife). So the Charlie scenes are still questionable.

I did enjoy his new accent and the bit on that topic. Righ?
posted by mwhybark at 6:21 PM on March 29, 2016

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